Portugal: It’s The Black Mamba to Rotterdam!

Portugal – RTP, the national broadcaster in charge of the national final, hosted the Grand Final of  Festival da Canção 2021! The Black Mamba won with “Love Is On My Side“!

Another national final is over, with many weeks in the making! Remember, a total of six hosts presented the three shows: 2 for each shows: Jorge Gabriel and Sonia Araujo (first semi-final); José Carlos Malato and Tânia Ribas de Oliveira (second semi-final); Filomena Cautela and Vasco Palmeirim (grand final). In the end, it’s Inês Lopes Gonçalves whom the people saw the most, as she was the green host through all shows.

The Final was hosted at the RTP studios in Lisbon. This was tonight’s line-up:

  1. Karetus & Romeu BairosSaudade
  2. Joana AlegreJoana do Mar
  3. Fábia MaiaDia lindo
  4. ValériaNa mais profunda saudade
  5. Carolina DeslandesPor um triz
  6. NEEVDancing in The Stars
  7. Pedro GonçalvesNão vou ficar
  8. Sara AfonsoContramão
  9. EU.CLIDESVolte-face
  10. The Black Mamba Love Is On My Side

Then the 7 regional juries voted, with Carolina Deslandes (considered the big favorite) winning above The Black Mamba, Sara Afonso and EU.CLIDES in the Top 4. These points turned into 12, 10, 8-1 eurovision style, the same points would be added with televote. And, surprise, Carolina Deslandes was only 3rd in televote and with a total of 20pts, she could not beat The Black Mamba. They were second of televote after all, as NEEV won that set of votes as he was expected to.

Just like last year, the entry with 10pts from both set of votes get the compromise win after juries and televote disagreed on their favorites (to the point one can wonder how much the juries want to kill televote favorites, as it happened also in Estonia). More importantly for us Eurovision fans, Portuguese televote had the two entries in English as their Top 2, putting an end to a long debate on whether it could go that way: it can! The Black Mamba opened FdC as the first to go in the first semi-final, and they closed FdC as the last to go in the Final! They will now go to Rotterdam!

What do you think of this entry? What are its chances in Rotterdam?


41 thoughts on “Portugal: It’s The Black Mamba to Rotterdam!

  1. Makemakes 2.0 anyone? I liked the Makemakes, but as time went by I grew tired of it, and by esc 2015 it was more around 15th in my rankings than skyrocketting to the Top. Shocked it got last, but in the end it sorta makes sense. Everyone would go “oh this is nice” but is that enough for it to pick Top 10 in many votes around Europe? I think this is doomed for bottom 3 in esc semi, and unfairly so if I may add. I don’t love it, I only like it. It’s nice. It’s decent. It’s well put together, even if it gets on your nerves by the reptitious nature of the chorus and obviously the vocals are an aqcuired taste. In general, you think “this is nice” but you’re not moved by it, you’re not inspired by it, you feel like it’s a gig for them so you’re not feeling it per se and aren’t motivated to support them.

    Of course this is the same story over and over with FdC picking a “boring” (but this is more instant than “Medio de sentir” and has a wider appeal) compromise winner (but in English and that’s an interesting new turn for Portugal in the contest) when there was a masterpiece (EU.CLIDES), great songs even if some had only average lives (Valéria, Joana, Sara, Karetus). It’s weird when a “nice” song wins but you had 5 songs you liked more!

    • 1. Lithuania* (2021>2020)
      2. France* (2021>2020)
      3. Finland (2021>2020)
      4. Ukraine* (2021>2020)
      5. Australia* (2021>2020)
      6. Romania* (2020>2021)
      7. Belgium* (2021>2020)
      8. Denmark (2021>2020)
      9. Portugal (2021>2020)
      10. Moldova* (2021>2020)
      11. Cyprus* (2021>2020)
      12. Norway (2020>2021)
      13. Croatia (2021>2020)
      14. Germany* (2020>2021)
      15. Spain (2020>2021)
      16. Ireland* (2021>2020)
      17. Albania (2020>2021)
      18. Netherlands (2020>2021)
      19. Serbia* (2020>2021)
      20. Israel (2020>2021)
      21. Czech Republic* (2021>2020)
      22. Slovenia (2020>2021)
      23. Estonia (2021>2020)

      *it’s a ranking based on audio only because many internally selected entries won’t have a live performance before the contest. Moreover, based on live, I have France above Lithuania…

    • Agreed on all pts. It kind of is The Makemakes 2.0, only I liked The Makemakes more (they were in my top 7 I think) and they still got last place..

  2. I mean it’s ok, a cute little song, maybe I will upgrade it a little from its current score but it’s a very underwhelming winner overall. A bit retro, a bit old school and it has some class but it’s getting too monotonous and the vocals are a tad annoying.

    Those portuguese compromises are bad. The jury winner was better, the televoting winner was better. This will go nowhere in esc imo.

  3. They really want to do as badly as possible in the contest, eh?

    Given Finland and Estonia improved, we got our new filler entry.

  4. Good song, pitch perfect live vocals, rich melody, repetitive chorus. The popified and conservative ESC universe will not like it. Boa sorte!

  5. I think it’s more of a professional performance rather than an interesting song. Pity cause FdC had much nicer entries to choose from. I’m already growing tired of the winning entry (downgraded to 6/10)
    One of the BEST national selections nevertheless ! Kudos Portugal <3

    Semi 2 :
    1. FIN
    2. SRB
    3. ALB
    4. MDA
    5. DNK
    6. PRT
    7. EST
    8. CZE

    Not a good night for semi 2 …

  6. Honestly???

    How come this won? It is boring and not memorable at all.

    0 points alert with the public, whilst juries will not be kind to it either.

  7. Boring, not memorable, puts me to sleep. Plus it’s in English? It’s as if they decided to take all the reasons for me to not like a Portuguese song and put it in one entry. Normally if there’s a boring Portuguese entry at least it’s actually in Portuguese… This is just the second coming of The Makemakes which was one of my absolute least favorites of 2015, seems like another NQ for Portugal.

    1) 🇩🇰 Denmark (2021 > 2020)
    2) 🇫🇮 Finland (2021 > 2020)
    3) 🇮🇹 Italy (2021 > 2020)
    4) 🇭🇷 Croatia (2021 > 2020)
    5) 🇱🇹 Lithuania (2021 > 2020)
    6) 🇲🇩 Moldova (2021 > 2020)
    7) 🇷🇴 Romania (2021 > 2020)
    8) 🇨🇾 Cyprus (2021 > 2020)
    9) 🇳🇴 Norway (2020 > 2021)
    10) 🇫🇷 France (2021 > 2020)
    11) 🇷🇸 Serbia (2021 > 2020)
    12) 🇨🇿 Czech Republic (2021 > 2020)

    13) 🇦🇺 Australia (2021 > 2020)
    14) 🇪🇪 Estonia (2021 > 2020)
    15) 🇮🇪 Ireland (2020 > 2021)
    16) 🇧🇪 Belgium (2021 > 2020)
    17) 🇺🇦 Ukraine (2020 > 2021)

    18) 🇦🇱 Albania (2020 > 2021)
    19) 🇮🇱 Israel (2020 > 2021)
    20) 🇸🇮 Slovenia (2020 > 2021)
    21) 🇳🇱 Netherlands (2021 > 2020)
    22) 🇪🇸 Spain (2021 > 2020)
    ****23) 🇵🇹 Portugal (2020 > 2021)****
    24) 🇩🇪 Germany (2020 > 2021)

  8. Portugal went with English and Denmark went with Danish? *mind blown*

    I actually really like this! I did not follow Fdc but this was one of the ones that stood out for me initially but I did not think it would end up winning. The song is kinda basic but I love his voice! It’s weird cause it reminds me of a mix of Armenia 2013 and Austria 2015 and I disliked those but I like this??

  9. As Morgan (I think it was Morgan) pointed out, it is that strange feeling when you like the song picked from a NF but there were other ones that you liked more. It happened to me again in 2018 when O Jardim was only my 9th most favourite in the entire FdC line up but it grew on me and ended up in my top 5 for that esc year.
    As for Love Is On My Side, it is a solid effort and Tatanka delivers with his unique voice and technique.
    Having that said I believe that Portugal missed a chance of making history (in my books at least) with either Saudade (mostly) or Volte Face (second to last in televote? seriously Portugal?).

    Boa sorte, Portugal!

    • Exactly my thoughts. In almost every other NF I would be very happy with this choice, but not in FdC 2021. There were so many more interesting choices, but both the juries and the televote wanted to play it safe. Will it pay off? I have my doubts.

      At least the juries killed NEEV.

      • Another positive thing is that it is the 5th(?) FdC edition in a row with way above average songs (most of them at least).

  10. Now imagine them revamping this to Portuguese!
    That would be the trolling of the season :P

  11. It’s hard not be disappointed when literally half of the songs in the final would have been my number 1, but that doesn’t take away the fact this is a solid song and entry. It’s likely to be in my top 5 or 10 at the end of the year.

    It was the night of British inspired rock music in the end. This is very Beatles and I wonder if that gives it a stronger chance to resonate and pick up votes, unlike the Makemakes which it’s compared to. I wonder if the UK jury will give 12 to this or Italy a la Georgia 2016.

  12. American ’60s soul to put everyone to sleep and suck up to the juries seems like a favourite this season. Portugal could have definitely done better with its first ever entry in english (not with Neev though). FdC 2021 was only saved by Eu.clides but he still finished close to the bottom.

    Barbara save this year please!

    1) France
    2) Lithuania

    Just ok
    3) Ireland
    4) Finland
    5) Ukraine
    6) Belgium
    7) Albania
    8) Australia

    Sorry, not sorry
    9) Cyprus
    10) Croatia
    » 11) Denmark
    12) Romania
    13) Norway
    14) Μoldova
    15) Slovenia
    » 16) Estonia
    17) Germany
    18) Spain
    » 19) Portugal
    20) Netherlands
    21) Serbia
    22) Czechia
    23) Ιsrael

    • Barbara save this year please!

      Not only she will most probably be my #1 at the end of the season but I will be pissed-off if she doesn’t win.

  13. Didn’t follow FdC at all but this seems a classic milquetoast winner we see so many times in NF’s. I can respect the vocals, nice melody, and generally being harmless…but I just find it to be so amateur weirdly, everything from the outfits to the cabaret-style singing + staging. It screams NQ to me.

  14. Fantastic entry… It is one of the stand outs for me in the ESC lineup, for now..
    Yes, I also prefered some other entries in this strong FdC, but loved them from the very beginning.. I love vocals, atmosphere on the stage, composition, lyrics…

  15. This is so non-ESC and the bubble is reacting accordingly. They want their pop songs and big soaring ballads. Meanwhile, Portugal 21 is trending at nº 4 on YT Portugal.

    • In the comments on Eurovision official facebook it’s mostly Portuguese fans either hating it’s in English or hating it’s not NEEV (who would be very bubble friendly). I think esc fans tend to respect it but fear most of all that it’s gonna do poorly and that would be used in Portugal as an excuse to run away from English penned songs later on

      • Probably. The song will please Portuguese listeners in general and its YT success proves that. The bubble’s reaction is predictable. They wanted NEEV and are furious at the way the jury treated him. The jury wanted to come across as non-prejudiced towards songs in English, so they decided to support Tatanka, a respected musician here. They were not counting with his televote appeal though and Deslandes lost.

  16. Oh, this is quite the surprise, isn’t it ? :o I don’t remember anyone considering them among the favourites. I liked it quite a lot on the first listening in the semi, but not as much after more listenings as it gets a bit repetitive and tiring and in the final they were only my 8th place. It’s a nice song, but it will get lost in the crowd most likely in ESC, sadly..

  17. It’s unfortunately just kindof there – which is probably how I feel about a majority of songs most years. Don’t love it, don’t despise it, don’t remember it.

  18. Boring retro soul ballad, which doesn’t have anything own to say about the genre. Music for upscale ad films, that save in production costs by buying anonymous soundalikes and not the originals.
    Guys, better to stick with the real deals as in everything in life.
    Hope this hat wearing nasal singer dude doesn’t think his new Sobral.

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